Microsoft to Copyright Pi, Found to Contain Entire Arial Font

Microsoft to Copyright Pi, Found to Contain Entire Arial Font

In a revelation that has sent shockwaves through the tech and math communities, Microsoft has announced plans to copyright the constant pi…

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If pi is truly infinite, then it contains all the works of Shakespeare, every version of Windows, and this comment I'm typing right now.

That's not how it's works. Being "infinite" is not enough, the number 1.110100100010000... is "infinite", without repeating patterns and dosen't have other digits that 1 or 0.

to be fair, though, 1 and 0 are just binary representations of values, same as decimal and hexadecimal. within your example, we'd absolutely find the entire works of shakespeare encoded in ascii, unicode, and lcd pixel format with each letter arranged in 3x5 grids.

Doesn't, the binary pattern 10101010 dosen't exists on that number, for example.

You can encode base 2 as base 10, I don't think anyone is saying it exists in binary form.

Well it's infinite so it has to I guess

Does this count:

No, because you can't mathematically guarantee that pi contains long strings of predetermined patterns.

The 1.101001000100001... example by the other user was just that - an example. Their number is infinite, but never contains a 2. Pi is also infinite, but does it contain the number e to 100 digits of precision? Maybe. Maybe not. The point is, we don't know and we can't prove it either way (except finding it by accident).

Actually, there'd only be single pixels past digit 225 in the last example, if I understand you correctly.

If we can choose encoding, we can "cheat" by effectively embedding whatever we want to find in the encoding. The existence of every substring in a one of a set of ordinary encodings might not even be a weaker property than a fixed encoding, though, because infinities can be like that.

If it's infinite without repeating patterns then it just contain all patterns, no? Eh i guess that's not how that works, is it? Half of all patterns is still infinity.

No. 1011001110001111... (One 1, one 0, two 1s, two zeros....) Doesn't contain repeating patterns. It also doesn't contain any patterns with '2' in it.

But pi is believed to be normal. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normal_number

So it should contain all finite patterns an infinite number of times.

However, as the name implies, this is nothing special about pi. Almost all numbers have this property. If anything, it's the integers that we should be finding weird, like you mean to tell me that every single digit after the decimal point is a zero? No matter how far you go, just zeroes forever?

Yeah, but your number doesn't fit pi. It may not have a pattern, but it's predictable and deterministic.

Pi is predictable and deterministic.

Computer programs exist that can tell you what the next digit is. That means it's deterministic, and running the program will give you a prediction for each digit (within the memory constraints of your computer).

The fact that it's deterministic is exactly why pi is interesting. If it was random it would typically be much easier to prove properties about it's digits.

There's no way to predict what the next unsolved pi digit will be just by looking at what came before it. It's neither predictable nor deterministic. The very existence of calculations to get the next digit supports that.

Note: I'm not saying Pi is random. Again, the calculations support the general non-randomness of it. It is possible to be unpredictable, undeterministic, and completely logical.

Note Note: I don't know everything. For all I know, we're in a simulation and we'll eventually hit the floating point limit of pi and underflow the universe. I just wanted to point out that your example doesn't quite fit with pi.

π isn't deterministic? How do you figure that? If two people calculate π they get different answers?

What π is, is fully determined by it's definition and the geometry of a circle.

Also, unpredictable? Difficult to predict, sure. Unpredictable by simple methods, sure. But fully impossible to predict at all?

As I said, you can't predict the next number simply based upon the set of numbers that came before. You have to calculate it, and that calculation can be so complex that it takes insane amounts of energy to do it.

Also, I think I was thinking of the philisophical definition of "deterministic" when I was using it earlier. That doesn't really apply to pi... unless we really do live in a simulation.

This might just be my computer-focused life talking, but I've never heard of deterministic meaning anything but non-random. At best philosophic determinism is about free will and the existence of true randomness, but that just seems like sacred consciousness.

I also don't know why predictability would be solely based on the numbers that came before. Election predictions are heavily based on polling data, and any good CEO will prepare for coming policy changes, so why ignore context here? If that's a specific definition in math then fair enough, but that's not a good argument for or against the existence of arbitrary strings in some numbers. Difficult is a far cry from impossible.

This might just be my computer-focused life talking

I'm a software eng too, but I have broad interests. Like I said, the philosophic use doesn't really have a place in this discussion and I messed up by bringing it in. The only way it would be relevant is if the universe is a simulation because, as you guessed, then free will itself becomes part of the equation.

I also don’t know why predictability would be solely based on the numbers that came before

There's a miscommunication happening here, and I'm wondering if I'm not explaining myself well. Election predictions use polling as their dataset, and there are no calculations that really go into predicting the results other than comparing the numbers within those sets. That's why they're notoriously garbage (every single pollster had Hillary winning in late October 2016, for example). Also, there aren't any calculations that go into a CEO/Boardroom's intuitions on how shareholders will react to policy changes, so I'm not sure about the relevance here. In the case of pi, there is no dataset that you can use that tells you what the next unknown number in pi is. The

*only*way to get that number is to run a very complex calculation. Calculations are not predictions.

Yeah, but if you infinitely repeat those numbers in that order, you have a pattern.

If you infinitely repeat them without a pattern, then you have the binary makeup of every letter in every possible sequence.

Not, the example I gave have infinite decimals who doesn't repeat and don't contain any patterns.

What people think about when said that pi contain all patters, is in normal numbers. Pi is believed to be normal, but haven't been proven yet.

An easy example of a number who contains "all patterns" is 0.12345678910111213...

Yes that's why they specified pi.

Still not enough, or at least pi is not known to have this property. You need the number to be "normal" (or a slightly weaker property) which turns out to be hard to prove about most numbers.

Wikipedia for normal numbers, and for disjunctive sequences, which is the slightly weaker property mentioned.

> natural numbers

> rational numbers

> real numbers

> regular numbers

> normal numbers

> simply normal numbers

> absolutely normal numbersHave mathematicians considered talking about what numbers they find okay, rather than everyone just picking their favorite and saying that one's the ordinary one?

I mean, unironically yes. It seems the most popular stance is that all math regardless of how weird is Platonically real, although that causes some real bad problems when put down rigorously. Personally I'm more of an Aristotelian.

In the case of things like rational or real numbers, they have a counterpart that's weirder (irrational and imaginary numbers). For the rest I'm not sure, but it's pretty common to just pick an adjective for a new concept. There's even situations where the same term gets used more than once in different subfields, and then they collide so you have to add another one to clarify.

For example, one open interval in the context of a small set of open intervals isn't closed

*analytically*under limits, or*algebraically*closed, but is*topologically*closed (and also topologically open, as the name suggests).

"Nearly all real numbers are normal (basically no real numbers are not normal), but we're only aware of a few. This one literally non-computable one for sure. Maybe sqrt(2)."

Gotta love it.

We're so used to dealing with real numbers it's easy to forget they're terrible. These puppies are a particularly egregious example I like to point to - functions that preserve addition but literally black out the

*entire*x-y plane when plotted. On rational numbers all additive functions are automatically linear, of the form mx+n. There's no nice in-between on the reals, either; it's the "curve" from hell or a line.Hot take, but I really hope physics will turn out to work without them.

Simply containing each number sequence is a significantly weaker property than having them all occur at the right frequency. Still, while nobody has proven it, it's generally expected to be true.

In some encoding scheme, those digits can represent something other than binary digits. If we consider your string of digits to truly be infinite, some substring

*somewhere*will be meaningful.One of the many things I loved about Sagan's

*Contact*is that, at the end, they found a pattern in pi when put into base 13. He didn't really go into it as it was the end of the book, but I really wish he'd survived to write a sequel.

This person doesn't understand infinity. Don't feel bad, no one really does, it sort of breaks our brains.

*shaves the sphere down with a sculptor's knife*There. 3.1416. Not perfectly round but it'll bake in the oven just fine.